Three days ago my yard, my orchard, my arboretum enchanted the eyes of passers-by, now it is simply a terribly despoiled place.
You see, I wanted my grandchildren, who live in an apartment in Athens, when they came to Heraklion, to have their own space to roll in the dirt, splash in the fountain with the little fish, cook in the wood-fired oven and on the grill, set a table under The stars. And now this space lies debris and pieces of a wrong Cretan mentality. Her name is Pallikaria. Why in the Municipality of MALEVIZIOU, some bright minds, decided after 30 years (no municipal authority would take the risk) to implement, now, the plan of zoning in the area of Ammoudara? Now, yes now, the brave have found themselves. City planning, therefore, in this completely anarchically structured area, is equivalent to war and looks like war. Heavy vehicles, bulldozers, excavators, trucks, make their appearance every morning in the targeted area to be looted. Waking up every morning I feel like I’m in a war zone. Olive groves disappear, walls are torn down, balconies are demolished, stairs are uprooted, gardens are uprooted, balconies are flattened, and yards become courtyards devoid of flowers and fragrances. In the new plots, which are added to the already existing non-buildable plots, the aspirants put a “lottery”. It will seem unbelievable to you, but whole plots of land are moving to other neighborhoods, to other owners. Her “servants” are always lucky
Power. Certainly, when someone dares and takes an electric saw and cuts down the trees and tears down the elaborate fence of a yard, some measures of which are given to him to make even the incomplete plot, which he just bought, sold, surely he has backs. This work is undertaken by the technical service of the Municipality. Of course, no one was notified by the owners about the repair of the old guttering. Justification; “The announcement was made through the press.” Some were informed by the new owner, with insolence and threats. “You have encroached on my land, don’t be surprised when you see the bulldozer at your door”! We laughed at first. The neighbor is joking we thought. Let this bullying last months and you expect everything to be done according to the letter of the law, by the technical service of the Municipality, which is deliberately deaf. (I do not believe, of course, that the other services of the Municipality, and especially the Mayor himself, are aware of such actions). And finally, one morning the threats became actions. Anything, was lucky enough to be in the part of the garden that is being expropriated, looted. Trees were illegally uprooted, objects were hurled, the dog house was thrown upside down. The prostrate police, instead of applying the self-defense, calmly waited for “the outlaw’s pleasant work” to finish, and they left together, brazenly ordering me to clean up the mess. My dog and her friend, a stray we host, got away. They are disoriented. They sleep on the staircase of our house at night and lounge on the street all day. They have no awareness that a wild winter is coming.
Numb, the neighbors and the passers-by watched the event shocked, with what they saw all this time taking place in their neighborhood, waiting with terror for their turn.
Three days after the cutting of the trees, an excavator, not of the Municipality of course, took over the job. The perpetrator brought him from his village. We and the neighbors couldn’t believe our eyes. Within a short time, the concrete fence, with pillars, intermediate posts and railings, fell to pieces, from the jaws of the excavator. Only the two-meter oven, withstood and stands upright dominating the ruins. The technical service of the Municipality, while bowing desperately, many times, at the time of the disaster, was completely absent until today, showing in this way its tolerance or even its consent for the looting of the tree-decorated yard. And the question that screams silently: What is the rush of the demolition, by the private person, since there was no objection from the owner to give the expropriated part. The burden falls on the old municipal authority that had not mentioned, in the table of contents, the existence of the cesspool in the garden, a very small part of which moved “to the even” now plot. Yes, you understood correctly, my friends, in the Crete of myths and Minoan that in those distant years, there was an irrigation and drainage system in Knossos, today we empty cesspools frequently, densely and the exit, although bitter, is not mentioned anywhere. So the Pit is the problem. While the solution was obvious (a very small “P” would give the solution). And while we were living a frenzy, the proposal of the Deputy Mayor of technical service, to remove the remaining fountain, with over thirty fish and to open a new cistern, fell like a bolt of lightning. A solution has not been given yet, the Technical service is inactive, indifferent and the purpose is, damages, lawyer and engineer will be paid by the normal owner, as for compensation, it is obvious that they will find a way not to give it.
Of course, the first information that was given was that “even if the Municipality breaks a nail, it will replace it”. The reality is that they are looking for a way to give you nothing, but charge you for everything. Then I saw the broken justice bleeding at the hands of whatever authority and I was scared. The justice that sustains and holds societies together, the weapon of the weak and the poor, captured in the hands of the few and close at hand, fallen and bleeding every kind of freedom seized by the absurd times.